Five Easy Ways to Waste Money on Expatriate Assignments

August 1, 2011

Understanding and noticing the real cost of an international assignment should be the number one focus of a company who’s relocating employees overseas.

Here are five of the main reasons why your initial budget could be thrown out of the window.

– Not worrying about the ROI
What and where is the financial justification of the international assignment? “It’s in the budget” won’t do. Who is held accountable that an ROI is achieved?

-Tell the employee that they are the only one who can do the job
Once you loose your negotiation leverage, discussing the terms and conditions of salary will not be the same. Be aware of the right criteria needed for the assignment and have established qualified candidates aligned. Make sure they value the career opportunity.

– Do not bother having an international assignment policy
Once you have one, adhere to it, it will help you stand your ground. All of the terms and conditions should be confirmed BEFORE the plane takes off. Once the expat is on the host ground country, the investment already made will pressure you to agree any term revisions.

-Focus on the employee, not the family
A well settled family is a well settled employee. Be sensitive of the potential family issues and include everyone in the process. Family is the expat’s support group.

-Separate assignment costs into multiple budget categories and line items
Everyone has to understand the full extend of the cost involved for it to be controlled.

Finally, short cuts in HR assignment policies in order to save money will only estrange the expatriate and his family. Treat them as first class citizens.

Source: Chuck Csizmar – CMC Compensation Group



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